This week marks the end of voter registration for the 2014 Primary Elections.
In order to vote in races taking place on May 6 — which include local elections for Onslow and Carteret County’s Board of Education and primaries for U.S. and N.C. House of Representatives, as well as Onslow County sheriff and clerk of court — voter registration forms must be submitted or post marked by April 11.
Unlike previous years, day-of voting registration for early voting will not be available to voters in North Carolina due to recent changes in state law. Those who miss the voter registration date will be unable to participate in the primary elections.
According to the North Carolina Department of Elections, changing party affiliation must also be done by the same date.
Josh Lawson, public information officer for the department of elections, said candidates encouraging voters to switch party affiliation to vote in primaries is perfectly legal and qualifies as free speech.
In Onslow County, there are three Republican primaries on the ballot in May: County Clerk of Court, County Sheriff and the Republican nomination for N.C. House districts 14 and 15. They will also vote on party primaries for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. The 30,312 registered Democrats in Onslow County will also vote in their party’s primary for the U.S. Senate as will the county’s 491 registered Libertarians.
All registered voters, including the county’s 3,838 unaffiliated voters, who can elect to vote on any one of the three parties’ ballots, will be able to vote in non-partisan races for state Supreme Court Associate Justice and Onslow County Board of Education.
In order to register, a prospective voter must be a U.S. Citizen, be 18 years old or older by the next general election and be a resident in the county where they’re registering for at least 30 days.
Voter registration or party affiliation changes can be completed at the Board of Elections in Carteret and Onslow Counties, the Department of Motor Vehicles and public libraries.
Forms for voter registration can also be found on the Onslow County Board of Elections websites and can be downloaded, printed and returned by mail. The Onslow County Board of Elections website is onslowcountync.gov/elections. Its mailing address is 4024 Richlands Highway, Jacksonville, NC 28540. For more information on voter registration, contact the Onslow County Board of Elections at 910-455-4484.